Netflix and Howard University set up scholarship honouring Chadwick Boseman

Netflix has set up a $5.4m (£3.9m) scholarship with Chadwick Boseman’s former university, in honour of the late actor.

The Black Panther star died last year after being privately diagnosed with colon cancer four years earlier.

Earlier this year he was posthumously nominated for a best actor Oscar for his role in the Netflix film Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, but lost out to Sir Anthony Hopkins.

Image: Boseman was best known for being in Black Panther. Pic: AP

Now, the streaming giant has created a scholarship with Boseman’s alma mater, Howard University, called the Chadwick A Boseman Memorial Scholarship.

It will be on offer to students in the College Of Fine Arts, which was named after the actor, and it covers four years of tuition, Netflix said.

Boseman’s wife, Simone Ledward-Boseman, welcomed the move, saying: “Many exemplary artists are not afforded the opportunity to pursue higher learning, we hope to support as many students as possible by removing the financial barrier to education.

“This endowment represents Chad’s devotion to the craft, his compassion for others, and his desire to support future storytellers.

“I’m overwhelmed with gratitude and amazed at the love and dedication shown by so many continuing to honour my husband’s work. I know he’d be proud.”

Ted Sarandos, Netflix co-CEO and chief content officer, said: “While he was taken from us too soon, his spirit is with us always in his work and the good that he has inspired.

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“He always spoke of his time at Howard and the positive way it shaped his life and career. Now, we will have the opportunity to give many future superheroes a chance to experience the same.”

Recipients of the award will have to “exemplify Boseman’s values” and show “a drive for excellence… leadership… respect… empathy…. and passion”, the university said.

Four students have been chosen as inaugural award winners, and are studying musical theatre, acting, theatre arts administration and dance.

Boseman graduated from the Washington DC university in 2000 with a directing degree, joining other alumni such as US Vice President Kamala Harris and Pulitzer Prize winning novelist Toni Morrison.